Weems during his first tenure with the Atlanta Falcons.
|No. 14 Atlanta Falcons|
|Position:||Wide receiver / Special teamer / Return specialist|
|Date of birth:||July 4, 1985|
|Place of birth:||Daytona Beach, Florida|
|Height:||5 ft 9 in (1.75 m)|
|Weight:||195 lb (88 kg)|
|High school:||Daytona Beach (FL) Seabreeze|
|Career highlights and awards|
Career NFL statistics as of Week 17, 2014
|Total Return yards:||4,033|
|Total Return TDs:||2|
|Stats at NFL.com|
Eric Grant Weems (born July 4, 1985) is an American football wide receiver, special teamer, and return specialist for the Atlanta Falcons. He played college football at Bethune-Cookman and was signed by the Falcons as an undrafted free agent in 2007.
Weems has also played for the Chicago Bears.
- 1 Early years
- 2 College career
- 3 Professional career
- 4 References
- 5 External links
Weems attended Seabreeze High School in Daytona Beach, Florida and was a letterman in football and basketball. In football, as a senior, he was named the team M.V.P. and was an All-Area selection and an All-State selection. In basketball, he was an All-Area selection.
While attending Bethune-Cookman University in his hometown of Daytona Beach, Florida, Weems was a stand-out wide receiver/A-back for the Bethune-Cookman Wildcats football team. He played under head coach Alvin Wyatt from 2003 to 2007. Weems left with his name in the records for numerous receiving categories throughout his four-year career at Bethune-Cookman. In his senior year, he added special teams to his portfolio, serving as the kickoff and punt return specialist for the Wildcats.
First stint with the Atlanta Falcons
Weems saw action in the NFL for the first time in the season finale against the Seattle Seahawks. He did not post any stats.
Weems' first career reception came with a 4-yard catch in the first quarter of the Falcons' week 12 match-up against the Carolina Panthers. Later in the same game, Weems provided a key block for a 7-yard Harry Douglas touchdown run. His first career fumble recovery came on a Minnesota Vikings muffed punt in week 16 of the 2008 season.
Weems won a job with the Atlanta Falcons as a punt returner in 2009 when wide receiver Harry Douglas was placed on the injured reserved list with a season ending knee injury. Weems ended up returning both punts and kicks as the season progressed. Weems scored his first career touchdown against the Dallas Cowboys in week 7 of the 2009 season, he caught a 30-yard touchdown pass from QB Matt Ryan. Weems scored his second career touchdown against the New York Giants in week 11 of the 2009 season, he had a 4-yard touchdown reception.
On the night of November 16, 2009, Weems was arrested in DeKalb County, Georgia for suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol. Shortly afterward, Weems released a statement saying “Unfortunately, I was involved in an incident on November 17, 2009. I am embarrassed about the situation and I sincerely apologize to the entire Atlanta Falcons organization and our great fans.” No specific action was taken by the Atlanta Falcons or the NFL.
Weems finished the 2009 season with 6 catches for 50 yards and 2 touchdowns. He also rushed 8 times for 53 yards, Weems returned 48 kicks for 1214 yards and 27 punts for 270 yards, Weems fumbled 3 times losing 2 of them, he also recorded 10 tackles.
Weems had a career high of 4 catches against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the first week of the 2010 season. He had his first career start as a wide receiver against the Arizona Cardinals in week 2. Weems returned his first career kickoff return for a touchdown against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on week 13 of the season. The 102 yards was a franchise record for the Atlanta Falcons. He also returned his first career punt return for a touchdown against the Carolina Panthers on week 17 of the season. The 55 yards was a career high. Weems was selected to the 2011 Pro Bowl as a special teams member. Weems Finished the 2010 season with 6 catches for 61 yards. He returned 40 kickoffs for a 1100 yards with one touchdown. Weems returned 18 punts for 230 yards with one touchdown. Weems also recorded 16 tackles on special teams. He was the only player in the NFC to return a kick and a punt for a TD.
Weems had a notable contribution for the Atlanta Falcons in the 2010-2011 NFC divisional championship game against the Green Bay Packers. Early in the second quarter, Weems fielded a kickoff two yards deep in his team's own end zone and ran virtually untouched for 102-yard TD kickoff return. The 102-yard return was the longest play in NFL postseason history.
The Atlanta Falcons re-signed Weems to a one-year contract on July 31, 2011. He appeared in all 16 games with the Atlanta Falcons, He made 2 starts at the wide receiver position. Weems caught a career high 11 catches for a career high 90 yards. Weems returned 24 kicks for 563 yards. He also returned 32 punts for 315 Yards. Weems also recorded 12 tackles on special teams. He did not score any touchdowns.
Weems was selected as a first-team alternate for the 2012 Pro bowl as a special teams player.
Weems returned 4 kickoffs for an average of 20 yards per kickoff and a long of 27 yards in the NFC wild card game between the Atlanta Falcons and New York Giants. He did not record any receptions in that game.
On March 14, 2012, Weems signed a three-year contract with the Chicago Bears as an unrestricted free agent. Weems played in all 16 games with one start at the wide receiver position. Weems caught 2 balls for only 27 yards. He returned 13 kickoffs for 231 yards and 1 punt for no yards. Weems fumbled once and recovered 2 fumbles during the season. He also made 8 tackles. The Bears finished the season with a record of 10-6 and did not make the playoffs.
Weems appeared in all 16 games with the Bears. He recorded only 1 reception for 8 yards. Weems returned 5 kickoffs for 57 yards. Weems recorded 9 tackles in the season and forced one fumble.
Second stint with the Atlanta Falcons
Weems appeared in all 16 regular season games with the Atlanta Falcons. He recorded 11 special teams solo tackles while forcing 1 fumble. Weems also caught 10 passes for 102 yards and 2 touchdowns. The 102 yards was a career high for him.
|Year||Team||Games||Receptions||Targets||Receiving Yards||Yards per Reception||Longest Reception||Receiving Touchdowns||First Downs||Fumbles||Fumbles Lost|
|Year||Team||Games||Punt Return Attempts||Punt Return Yards||Punts Returned for Touchdown||Punts Fair Caught||Longest Punt Return||Kickoff Return Attempts||Kickoff Return Yards||Kickoffs Returned for Touchdown||Kickoffs Fair Caught||Longest Kickoff Return|
- Choate, Dave (Juyl 31 2011). "Eric Weems Returns To The Falcons Special Teams". TheFalcoholic.com. Retrieved 2014-08-17. Check date values in:
- Dickerson, Jeff (March 14, 2012). "Bears agree to deal with Eric Weems". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2014-08-17.
- Patra, Kevin (August 16, 2014). "Santonio Holmes, Chicago Bears reach contract". NFL.com. Retrieved 2014-08-16.
- Adams, Jay. "Falcons Bring Back WR, Specialist Weems". AtlantaFalcons.com. Retrieved 24 August 2014.
- Adams, Jay (March 7, 2015). "Falcons Sign Weems to Contract Extension". AtlantaFalcons.com. Retrieved 2015-07-23.
- McClure, Vaughn (March 6, 2015). "Eric Weems agrees to return to Falcons". ESPN.com. Retrieved 2015-07-23.
- "Eric Weems Stats". ESPN Internet Ventures. Retrieved 7 February 2014.